Pike County preps for busy deer hunting season - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Pike County preps for busy deer hunting season

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PIKE COUNTY, Ill. (WGEM) -

Hunters not only bring their rifles and bows to come hunt deer in Western Illinois, they also bring their wallets.

Businesses in Pike County say this is their busiest time of year, with the season getting off to a good start.

"There's been a lot of big bucks seen so, I think there's a lot of guys pretty fired up," said Scott Andress, owner of Pike County Archery in Pittsfield.

Andress said this time of year is always busy with hunters coming in looking for gear.

"Some guys that come in from out of state, they might forget something," Andress said. "We want to have anything they can possibly forget. We want to have it here."

Andress said they've already been busy, and with the temperatures dropping, he's expecting business to pick up even more.

"In about a week and a half, two weeks, the rut will start coming on," Andress said."When that starts happening, everything gets crazy."

Meanwhile, at Harpole's Heartland Lodge in nearby Nebo, Assistant Manager Allen Ballinger said  they've already been preparing for a busy season.

"We have to go out and scout; find out where they've been, what they're doing and what they're patterns are," said Ballinger.

And in the next few weeks, Ballinger expects to see around 8 to 12 hunters staying at the lodge at one time.

"What makes Pike County world renowned is we do have huge, huge bucks in the area," Ballinger said. "So, we usually have a pretty good opportunity to get one."

Business owners say the crowds usually continue into the first firearm deer season which starts November 22.

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